9/11/2001 Attacks Were An Inside Job > 9/11 Material & Research

Govt WARNED 9/11 Commission --> 'Not To Cross The Line'

(1/4) > >>

Dig:
Revealed: Ashcroft, Tenet, Rumsfeld warned 9/11 Commission about ‘line’ it ’should not cross’
http://rawstory.com/2010/03/revealed-ashcroft-tenet-rumsfeld-warned-911-commission-line-should-cross/
By Sahil Kapur
Wednesday, March 17th, 2010 -- 9:11 am



Senior Bush administration officials sternly cautioned the 9/11 Commission against probing too deeply into the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, according to a document recently obtained by the ACLU.

The notification came in a letter dated January 6, 2004, addressed by Attorney General John Ashcroft, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld and CIA Director George J. Tenet. The ACLU described it as a fax sent by David Addington, then-counsel to former vice president Dick Cheney.

In the message, the officials denied the bipartisan commission's request to question terrorist detainees, informing its two senior-most members that doing so would "cross" a "line" and obstruct the administration's ability to protect the nation.

"In response to the Commission's expansive requests for access to secrets, the executive branch has provided such access in full cooperation," the letter read. "There is, however, a line that the Commission should not cross -- the line separating the Commission's proper inquiry into the September 11, 2001 attacks from interference with the Government's ability to safeguard the national security, including protection of Americans from future terrorist attacks."

The 9/11 Commission, officially called the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, was formed by President Bush in November of 2002 "to prepare a full and complete account of the circumstances surrounding the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks" and to offer recommendations for preventing future attacks.
Story continues below...

"The Commission staff's proposed participation in questioning of detainees would cross that line," the letter continued. "As the officers of the United States responsible for the law enforcement, defense and intelligence functions of the Government, we urge your Commission not to further pursue the proposed request to participate in the questioning of detainees."

FireDogLake's Marcy Wheeler speculates that this was an attempt by the Bush administration to ensure that its torture of certain detainees, which has since been widely documented, remained secret.

"[W]hoever made these annotations appears to have been most worried that Commission staff members could make independent judgments about the detainees and the interrogations," Wheeler wrote on her blog. The official "didn't want anyone to independently evaluate the interrogations conducted in the torture program."

Eventually, the commission's co-chairs harshly criticized the administration for having purportedly "destroyed" tapes of its interrogations with terror suspects, as Raw Story reported last year.

9/11 Commission members Thomas Kean and Lee H. Hamilton wrote that although US President George W. Bush had ordered all executive branch agencies to cooperate with the probe, "recent revelations that the CIA destroyed videotaped interrogations of Qaeda operatives leads us to conclude that the agency failed to respond to our lawful requests for information about the 9/11 plot."

"Those who knew about those videotapes — and did not tell us about them — obstructed our investigation."

They continued: “There could have been absolutely no doubt in the mind of anyone at the CIA — or the White House — of the commission’s interest in any and all information related to Qaeda detainees involved in the 9/11 plot.

"Yet no one in the administration ever told the commission of the existence of videotapes of detainee interrogations," Kean and Hamilton wrote.

The letter can be found on page 26 of the ACLU's set of unveiled documents.

gEEk squad:
Important reminder when reading the story above: Over one quarter of the 9/11 commission findings cite "intelligence" gathered by torture.

http://rawstory.com/08/news/2009/05/13/report-much-of-911-commissions-findings-cite-intelligence-garnered-by-torture/

Report: much of 9/11 Commission’s findings cite intelligence garnered by torture

Much of the material cited in the 9/11 Commission’s findings was derived from terror war detainees during brutal CIA interrogations authorized by the Bush administration, according to a Wednesday report.

“More than one-quarter of all footnotes in the 9/11 Report refer to CIA interrogations of al Qaeda operatives subjected to the now-controversial interrogation techniques,” writes former NBC producer Robert Windrem in The Daily Beast. “In fact, information derived from the interrogations was central to the 9/11 Report’s most critical chapters, those on the planning and execution of the attacks.”

“… [Information] derived from the interrogations is central to the Report’s most critical chapters, those on the planning and execution of the attacks,” reported NBC. “The analysis also shows - and agency and commission staffers concur - there was a separate, second round of interrogations in early 2004, done specifically to answer new questions from the Commission.

“9/11 Commission staffers say they ‘guessed’ but did not know for certain that harsh techniques had been used, and they were concerned that the techniques had affected the operatives’ credibility. At least four of the operatives whose interrogation figured in the 9/11 Commission Report have claimed that they told interrogators critical information as a way to stop being ‘tortured.’ The claims came during their hearings last spring at the U.S. military facility in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.”

“Commission executive director Philip Zelikow (later counselor to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice) admitted, ‘We were not aware, but we guessed, that things like that were going on. We were wary…we tried to find different sources to enhance our credibility,’” Windrem continued. “(Zelikow testified before the Senate on Wednesday, May 13, that he had argued in a 2005 memo that some of the tactics used on suspected terrorists violated the constitutional ban on cruel and unusual punishment.)”

He adds: “At least four operatives whose interrogation figured in the 9/11 Commission Report have claimed that they told interrogators critical information as a way to stop being ‘tortured.’ Those claims came during their hearings in the spring of 2007 at the U.S. military facility in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.”

Philip Zelikow, a former colleague of then-National Security Adviser Condoleeza Rice, was appointed executive director of the 9/11 Commission despite his close ties to the Bush White House, and he remained in regular contact with Rove while overseeing the commission, according to New York Times reporter Philip Shenon’s new book, The Commission: The Uncensored History of the 9/11 Investigation.

Shenon, who led the Times coverage of the 9/11 Commission and still writes for the paper, based his book on myriad interviews with staffers and members of the commission, according to Holland. In addition to his ties to Rice and Rove, Zelikow had been the “architect” of a plan to demote Clinton-era counterterrorism czar Richard Clarke, who sounded the alarm about Osama bin Laden and al Qaeda months before the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks they perpetrated.

Zelikow “had laid the groundwork for much of what went wrong at the White House in the weeks and months before September 11. Would he want people to know that?” Shenon writes, according to Holland’s summary.

Shenon also reports that Zelikow received at least two calls from Rove while serving as 9/11 Commission executive director, and he made numerous calls to the White House, Holland says.

Zelikow has not denied speaking to Rove, but he apparently claimed their conversations involved his old job as director of the University of Virginia’s Miller Center of Public Affairs.

9/11 Commission members Thomas Kean and Lee H. Hamilton wrote that although US President George W. Bush had ordered all executive branch agencies to cooperate with the probe, “recent revelations that the CIA destroyed videotaped interrogations of Qaeda operatives leads us to conclude that the agency failed to respond to our lawful requests for information about the 9/11 plot.”

“Those who knew about those videotapes — and did not tell us about them — obstructed our investigation.”

They continued: “There could have been absolutely no doubt in the mind of anyone at the CIA — or the White House — of the commission’s interest in any and all information related to Qaeda detainees involved in the 9/11 plot.

“Yet no one in the administration ever told the commission of the existence of videotapes of detainee interrogations,” Kean and Hamilton wrote.

They said the panel made repeated, detailed requests to the spy agency in 2003 and 2004 for information about the interrogation of members of the Islamic extremist network but were never notified about the existence of the tapes.

The CIA has since revealed that in 2005 it destroyed videotapes of prisoners being tortured.

“I’m not a lawyer and I’m not sure if they broke the law or not but what they did do, I think, is try to impede our investigation,” said Kean. “Because we asked for…anything to do with those detainees, because they were the ones who knew most about the plot of 9/11 and that was our mandate.”

He continued: “We asked for every single thing that they had, and then my vice chairman, Lee Hamilton, looked the director of the CIA in the face and said, ‘look, even if we haven’t asked for something, if it’s pertinent to our investigation, make it available to us.’ And our staff asked again and again of their staff and the tapes were not given to us. So there was no question.”

In a telephone survey of 1200 individuals, just 47% agreed that “the 9/11 attacks were thoroughly investigated and that any speculation about US government involvement is nonsense.” Almost as many, 45%, indicated they were more likely to agree “that so many unanswered questions about 9/11 remain that Congress or an International Tribunal should re-investigate the attacks, including whether any US government officials consciously allowed or helped facilitate their success.”

A number of widows of the victims of attacks on Sept. 11, 2001 said the 9/11 Commission was a failure for not addressing all the concerns and questions about the day’s events. They have called for a new, independent commission to probe the real history of that day.



EvadingGrid:
Government Warned 9/11 Commission 'Not To Cross The Line'




Paul Joseph Watson
Propaganda Matrix
Wednesday, March 17, 2010


Ashcroft, Rumsfeld, Tenet told Hamilton and Kean not to pursue questioning of terror patsies

Documents recently obtained by the ACLU show that the government warned the 9/11 Commission against getting to the bottom of the September 11 terror attacks in a letter signed by Attorney General John Ashcroft, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld and CIA Director George J. Tenet.

In a letter dated January 6, 2004, the Commission was refused permission to question terrorist detainees, with inquiry leaders Hamilton and Kean being told there was "A line that the Commission should not cross," in the course of its investigation.

A PDF of the letter (page 26) can be read here.

The government urged the Commission, "Not to further pursue the proposed request to participate in the questioning of detainees," according to the letter, citing the need to "Safeguard the national security, including protection of Americans from future terrorist attacks."

The warning was just one example of how the Bush administration fiercely struggled to prevent the 9/11 Commission from conducting a deeper probe into the attacks. Bush and Cheney refused to appear before the Commission separately and both refused to testify under oath, instead meeting with panel members informally and in private, with no recordings of the meeting allowed.

"It appears that David Addington took the lead on refusing the 9/11 Commission’s request," writes the FireDogLake blog. "It appears Addington got the draft of the letter from 9/11 Commission–which was addressed to Rummy and George Tenet. Tenet and Addington clearly had a conversation about how to respond. But it seems that Addington drafted the response, got Condi, Andy Card, and Alberto Gonzales to review it, and then sent it to Tenet (and, presumably, Rummy) to okay and sign the letter."

As FireDogLake rightly points out, this was part of an attempt to cover-up the systematic torture of detainees which did not fully come to light until the Abu Ghraib scandal was exposed in April 2004

However, the refusal to allow access to detainees was also undoubtedly so that the Commission members couldn't later blow the whistle on the fact that the men were nothing more than patsies and goat herders who had nothing whatsoever to do with the 9/11 attacks.

As we have constantly emphasized in the face of establishment media spin that has demonized the mere act of questioning the official 9/11 story, the majority of the 9/11 Commission members themselves have all gone on record to publicly slam the official story as untrue.

The senior counsel to the 9/11 Commission – John Farmer – said that the government agreed not to tell the truth about 9/11, echoing the assertions of fellow 9/11 Commission members who concluded that the Pentagon was engaged in deliberate deception about their response to the attack.

Senator Max Cleland, who resigned from the 9/11 Commission after calling it a “national scandal”, stated in a 2003 PBS interview,

“I’m saying that’s deliberate. I am saying that the delay in relating this information to the American public out of a hearing… series of hearings, that several members of Congress knew eight or ten months ago, including Bob Graham and others, that was deliberately slow walked… the 9/11 Commission was deliberately slow walked, because the Administration’s policy was, and its priority was, we’re gonna take Saddam Hussein out.”

Cleland, speaking with Democracy Now, said,

“One of these days we will have to get the full story because the 9-11 issue is so important to America. But this White House wants to cover it up”.

In 2006 the Washington Post reported that several members of the 9/11 Commission suspected deception on part of the Pentagon. As reported,

“Some staff members and commissioners of the Sept. 11 panel concluded that the Pentagon’s initial story of how it reacted to the 2001 terrorist attacks may have been part of a deliberate effort to mislead the commission and the public rather than a reflection of the fog of events on that day, according to sources involved in the debate.”

9/11 Commissioner Bob Kerry also has unanswered questions. As reported by Salon, he believes that there are legitimate reasons to believe an alternative version to the official story.

“There are ample reasons to suspect that there may be some alternative to what we outlined in our version,” Kerry said. The commission had limited time and limited resources to pursue its investigation, and its access to key documents and witnesses was fettered by the administration.

Commissioner Tim Roemer, speaking to CNN, stated that Commission members were considering a criminal probe of false statements. As quoted,

“We were extremely frustrated with the false statements we were getting,” Roemer told CNN. “We were not sure of the intent, whether it was to deceive the commission or merely part of the fumbling bureaucracy.”

Despite the fact that the majority of 9/11 Commission members have openly attacked the official story, the corporate media still frames any suspicion surrounding 9/11 as baseless conspiracy fodder at best, and at worst - terrorist and extremist propaganda.

REF

http://www.aclu.org/files/assets/CIA.pdf

http://www.counterpunch.org/vest03312004.html
http://emptywheel.firedoglake.com/2010/03/16/did-addington-oppose-911-commission-questions-to-avoid-independent-evaluation-of-torture-program/
http://www.dispatchpolitics.com/live/content/national_world/stories/2008/06/15/detainees_side_0615.ART_ART_06-15-08_A4_HNAGCSB.html?sid=101
http://www.prisonplanet.com/911-commission-counsel-government-agreed-to-lie-about-911.html
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/08/01/AR2006080101300.html?sub=new
http://www.salon.com/ent/feature/2006/06/27/911_conspiracies/index4.html
http://www.cnn.com/2006/POLITICS/08/02/9-11panel.pentagon/index.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/shameful-anti-free-speech-lobby-labels-questioning-government-hate.html

trailhound:
 Everybody needs to read this!

EvadingGrid:
Alex announced it on the Live Radio Show

Navigation

[0] Message Index

[#] Next page

Go to full version